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How to become a Waiter

avg. starting salary

Thinking about getting into waiting? We’ve got a few tips for you… Waiters and Waitresses serve food or drinks at restaurants, bars and cafés. They may also work at larger functions, providing excellent service guests everywhere from music festivals to large-scale sporting events. Often working front-of-house, waiting staff can literally make or break the guests overall experience, showing just how important their role is in the hospitality industry. Some waiting staff may also choose to specialise in silver service or train as Sommeliers (wine waiters) to help get themselves ahead. Typical responsibilities for a Waiter may include:
  • Greeting and serving customers
  • Taking orders
  • Making menu recommendations and providing information on any specials or offers available
  • Answering customer queries and dealing with complaints
  • Processing payments
  • Cleaning and preparing tables

With great waiting, comes great responsibility. And by responsibility, we mostly mean tips… And with so much at stake when it comes to offering-up world-class service, excellent interpersonal skills are absolutely essential to make the most out of this positon. Aside from communication skills and the ability to build up an instant rapport with the clientele, the ability to keep a cool head at all times is essential. The hospitality industry can be extremely fast-paced and stressful at times, so keeping calm under pressure will certainly be a necessity. After all, if you can’t stand the heat (and various other clichés). Other key skills for a Waiter include:
  • A good memory
  • A head for numbers
  • Ability to multi-task
  • Patience
  • Confidence
  • Excellent personal hygiene
  • The ability to work under your own initiative



Up to £20,000

Head Waiter

Up to £25,000

Restaurant Supervisor

Up to £30,000

"I started waiting at university, just to earn a bit of extra cash. It was only in a local pub, but was a great way to gain experience. You have to be quick on your feet, and get used to working fast, but that’s what I like about it so much. There’s never a dull moment or time to clock-watch. You’re just constantly kept on your toes. I now provide silver service at big events, and I’ve worked everywhere from Wembley to the O2 to help keep the VIPs in check. Although, speaking of toes, make sure you invest in some sensible shoes. Trust me, you’ll thank me later."

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